Photo: Libe Goad
Our future robot masters aren't ready to take over the world just yet, but they're definitely interested in keeping us puny humans fit and healthy (possibly as a future slave-labor force). Enter Autom, a wide-eyed talking robot that keeps your food intake and workouts in check with the press of a few buttons.
Autom, which made an appearance at this year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, works like this: Check in with your robo-pal once a day, answer a series of questions, and follow its coldly logical advice.
Of course, like any well-mannered robot, Autom breaks the ice with a little small talk about the weather before asking you to log your meals and how much time you spent exercising that day. The robot has a built-in food database (pulled from the comprehensive Calorie King web site), which makes it easier to keep track of your caloric intake. Once you've logged everything, Autom will offer some basic advice along the lines of "drink eight glasses of water a day."
While you perform your check-in duties, Autom speaks to you in a soothing female voice as it swivels its head from side to side, slowly blinking its eyes. To be honest, looking into those big blue eyes is kind of creepy, but Autom's makers claim that's the magic sauce that makes this robot more effective than MyFitnessPal for iPhone or the umpteen other diet apps out there. Autom is not yet available in stores, but will get its first U.S. trial run in with a major insurance company later this year.